Belly fat is one of the most dreaded things these days. Hardly anyone seems to be able to stand it anymore! And we all wish we could do something that would reduce it for good!
Well, while there are a couple of things that could be done to reduce belly fat, we wouldn’t want our efforts to be in vain if we don’t know just how this excess belly fat keeps building up as this could make any effort counterproductive.
Usually, people gain more belly fat after pregnancy, during their middle age years, when they eat foods containing more calories than is required for them or when they drink way too many calories at a time. Hence, the term, “beer belly”.
For this reason, it is imperative to know the causes of belly fat so that it can be managed.
Excess belly fat can actually cause certain health issues like type 2 diabetes, heart diseases, high blood pressure, asthma, etc.
5 CAUSES OF BELLY FAT
Getting rid of belly fat might seem so straightforward but gaining it isn’t as easy to point out a particular source. That’s why it is important for you to know some of the ways belly fat can be gained.
- Poor Diet: Foods high in sugar like confectionery and soda or fruit juice can lead to excess belly fat because they make you gain weight while slowing your metabolism and reducing the rate at which you burn fat.
Foods with high carbohydrates and low protein contents can lead to weight gain. This is because when a person has a high protein diet, they tend to feel full after eating and stay full for a long time, while people with a low protein diet may eat more portions of food, which can lead to an over intake of calories and consequently, excess weight.
The ultimate worst kind of fat are Trans Fats. These ‘bad boys’ cause inflammation which may lead to a person being obese.
Unfortunately, they’re in a lot of foods that we eat daily. Foods like fast foods and baked foods. Basically, foods that have a longer shelf life. For example cakes, biscuits etc. To know if your food contains trans fats ensure to always read the labelling.
- Excess Alcohol: Too much alcohol intake can lead to excess belly fat.
Researchers found out that, while moderate alcohol intake, such as red wine, helps reduce the risk of heart attacks, excessive alcohol – especially too much alcohol taken at a time – leads to excessive belly weight with time.
- Inactivity and lack of exercise: It only makes sense that if you eat more than you burn up, you’ll be well on your way to putting on excess fat.
Inactivity is one major way to build up excess fat in the body. Regular exercising and general activity helps reduce the fat in the body as much of it is used up in the process of exercising.
Besides, exercise helps you stay in shape.
- Stress: This is one major cause of belly fat. You see, when we’re stressed, our brain releases a hormone called cortisol and what this does is it helps the body concentrate on depositing fat in the belly region.
Notice how calm, relaxed and a bit lazy you get when you’ve just had a meal? Well, the body might be trying to replicate that feeling when you’re stressed, to help calm you down. And so it stores excess fat in the belly then, for later use.
- Genes: Most times, excess belly fat can result from genetic factors. There are certain conditions that are passed down from genes and your belly fat could be one of them.
This, however, doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get obese but it rather increases your chances of getting belly fat.
So, yes uncle Dave had excess belly fat though he didn’t drink much and Grandpa Joe doesn’t seem to eat a thing yet his belly bulges proudly. So you too might possibly put on excess belly fat, therefore, you might want to be making healthier lifestyle choices.
- Sleep: Studies show that people who sleep below the recommended 7 hours, tend to put on excess weight more than those who sleep through the recommended time.
If you’re a late sleeper and you only manage to have just 5 hours of sleep in a day, you’re more likely to gain excess belly weight.
Another way of adding excessive belly weight is having Sleep apnoea. This is a sleep disorder related to breathing during sleep and it leads to a high belly fat amount.
Other ways of gaining excess belly fat include, ageing, menopause, hormonal imbalance, post pregnancy, gut bugs, and so on.
A healthy lifestyle will play a major role in reducing the risks of gaining excess belly fat.
If you found this helpful or have any questions or suggestions, please leave a comment below.